Presentation Preparation: 1 Forgotten Element

Michael Gibson
5 min readMay 24, 2021

Kids: Experts of Presentation Preparation

You know your goal. You have well organized content. You are determined to be well prepared. But you are not the only one who needs to be prepared.

A common parenting experience serves as a good example.

“Mommeeeee. I looooove you!

You are the best mommy in the world! Thank you for being a good mommy.

Guess what? I cleaned my room and did all of my chores! You didn’t even have to remind me!”

The words are delivered with a big hug and puppy dog eyes.

Awwwww. So sweet.

That is a natural response–unless you are an experienced mom who knows that such expressions of love from this child are rare and seldom happen without reason.

To the inexperienced eye, it may seem calloused when the mom responds by saying,

“What do you want?”

Those with experience know that there is a good chance that the child does want something, and that child is hoping that their sweetness will pave the way for a “yes” to whatever they have in mind.

Some kids are masters of this kind of manipulation-experts of presentation preparation. They are subtle enough and excited enough to guide the adults toward their goals. It is impressive to watch. And it is a little embarrassing to realize years later how one of your own kids could do this so effectively.

As presenters, we can learn from this experience.

Kids know how to prepare an audience! Photo by Senjuti Kundu on Unsplash;

Presentation Preparation: More than Content

There is power in presentation preparations. And there is often-untapped power in audience preparation.

Presenters often focus so much on their content and their delivery that miss an opportunity. They prepare themselves and neglect to prepare their audience.

Imagine two employees who have the same goal.

Employee One focuses solely on content preparation and practicing the delivery. He feels like he is being responsible with his presentation preparation. During the days leading up to the meeting, people from the…



Michael Gibson

Michael Gibson is a speaker, trainer, and instructional designer. His book, Big Presentations in Small Rooms, is available at Amazon.